Adderall is considered a first line of treatment for people diagnosed with Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD). As it improves focus, increases attention, and gives bouts of productivity, is there a risk of dependency and addiction to this drug? Understand the signs of Adderall abuse and how you can get help.
Prescription drug addiction is on the rise. In the US, over 18 million adults reported having misused prescription drugs at least once within 2017. The variety of drugs taken were mostly sedatives, pain relievers, and stimulants. Sadly, the ADHD medication Adderall is no exception. A question commonly asked, “Can you get addicted to Adderall?” is often posed by regular and experimental users especially among the younger age group.
Is Adderall Addictive?
A 2016 article from the John Hopkins University claims that Adderall abuse is on the rise among young adults. The components of Adderall are amphetamines, a class of stimulants that have a high rate of misuse.
How addictive is Adderall?
Dextroamphetamine, one of the main active ingredients in Adderall is a substance that has a high chance of misuse. Although there is no specific dosage that will lead someone into addiction, there are several factors that come into play why Adderall can be addictive to many:
- Frequency and amount of dosage: Some people who take in higher doses or are advised to take it frequently are more likely to fall into misuse than those who take smaller doses.
- Physical factors: Some individuals are more sensitive to the drug’s effects, or their metabolism affects the way their system processes the drug.
- Mental and behavioral factors: Mental health problems such as depression, anxiety, mood disorders, and other psychiatric-related concerns can also be a trigger for misuse.
- Lifestyle factors: Other people have prior addictions such as alcohol, prescription drugs, or street drugs which can stack on top of the Adderall abuse. Life stressors and circumstances can also affect one’s dependency on the drug.
All these factors differ for each individual, but the bottom line is this: Any person who misuses Adderall intentionally or unintentionally has the risk of developing a full-blown addiction.
Signs Of Adderall Addiction
Like any other drug, there are also definite Adderall addiction signs that you need to look out for. Here are the various hallmarks of ongoing abuse of the drug:
- Taking Adderall more than intended dosage: Each dosage of medication has its designated amount and frequency of intake. If you or someone you love takes more amount of Adderall or has increased the frequency of use than the indicated prescription dosage, this is a potential sign of abuse.
- Cravings for the drug: You have tried to stop using Adderall, but the cravings keep on coming back. You can also experience the same urges when you take a lower dosage than you frequently had.
- Mood and behavior changes: Some people who take an excessive amount of Adderall can experience rambling speech, unusual excitability, and hyperactivity. The stimulant properties of the drug can potentially turn someone aggressive or easily agitated as well.
- Physical changes: Addiction to stimulants such as Adderall may cause a loss of interest in physical activity or food. Thus, they may lose weight, have an unhygienic appearance, dry skin, and sunken eyes. Those who misuse Adderall can also suffer from long bouts of insomnia.
- Mental changes: There are also noticeable changes in someone who is abusing Adderall. For some, there can be instances of memory loss, concentration problems, confusion, and disorientation.
These symptoms of Adderall abuse should not be taken lightly. With the help of addiction specialists, you can recover from Adderall addiction through a thorough, safe, and evidence-based treatment approach.
How To Recover From Adderall Addiction
Adderall addiction doesn’t have to spiral and turn into life-threatening complications. It is possible to get help and recover from Adderall abuse with tried-and-tested systems of care. In many high-quality addiction rehab centers, this is what you can generally expect under an Adderall recovery program:
The main cause of dependency and addiction are uncomfortable withdrawal symptoms. Often, it is difficult for many individuals to stop taking Adderall on their own because the withdrawal can be uncomfortable, painful, or even deadly. Thus, having a proper system of medical detox with healthcare professionals on standby can help make the process of removing drug in your system much more smoothly. Patients are provided with nutritious meals, comfortable lodging, and round-the-clock care.
Once the patient recovers from withdrawal symptoms, they can proceed to various treatment programs that are personalized for their needs. There are different varieties of treatment for Adderall addiction, including:
- 12-Step Programs
- Non-12 Step Programs
- Holistic Approaches
- Luxury Rehab
- Dual Diagnosis
- Outpatient Care
And many others. The main goal of these programs is to target the root cause of addiction and to manage triggers that lead to misuse.
The battle against Adderall addiction does not stop within the rehab center. Thus, patients are provided with local-based supports to aid them towards permanent sobriety. Some recommendations include:
- Health and fitness plans
- Relapse prevention plans
- Continued psychotherapy
- Local support groups
- Lifestyle and recreation recommendations
These community pillars in place can help someone avoid future addiction triggers while providing accountability and support for those in recovery.
Adderall Addiction Recovery: Help Is Available
If you notice signs of Adderall dependency and addiction in yourself or a loved one, it is not too late to get help. There are top-notch rehab centers ready to guide you in your recovery journey. It is possible to start a new chapter being addiction-free.
- Drugabuse.gov – “What is the scope of prescription drug misuse?”.
- Hub.jhu.edu – “Adderall abuse on the rise among young adults, John Hopkins study suggests”.
- Health.harvard.edu – “Overcoming cocaine or stimulant addiction”.
Sunshine Behavioral Health strives to help people who are facing substance abuse, addiction, mental health disorders, or a combination of these conditions. It does this by providing compassionate care and evidence-based content that addresses health, treatment, and recovery.
Licensed medical professionals review material we publish on our site. The material is not a substitute for qualified medical diagnoses, treatment, or advice. It should not be used to replace the suggestions of your personal physician or other health care professionals.